It's been a while since my last update pertaining to the Chip Shop board game. After realising that board games isn't that lucrative of a business, it slipped down my priority list somewhat. I also had a lot of feedback from the UK Games Expo (thanks to Carrie and Tyler for running the booth for me) to process and that took time...
I am happy to now announce the release of what I will call, version 0.2 of Chip Shop, complete with a lot of changes. The aim to fix balance issues, make components have more of a purpose and make the game feel even more like a game.
The main nugget of feedback was that there was too much money in the game and that turning money into resources was pointless. I have always wanted to ensure that this necessity remained in the game and was trying to figure out a mechanism that made this an essential step for players.
As well as reducing the quantities of money generated from actions I have also reworked the staff cards to work differently. Many criticised the staff cards for being pointless, and with this new mechanic, players must use staff to convert money to resources, and staff are no longer kept by a player, but used in each turn.
Each player now begins with two 'staff' tokens that each turn they can allocate to squares on the board, with the actions they trigger happening in a later phase.
This makes what I am now calling 'specialists' far more valuable as you can only gain resources by using them.
Personalities are now chosen at the beginning of the game, defining your starting scores and resources, and have one use abilities. There are ways to exchange them throughout the game.
I was always keen to make the products that players are working on secret and struggled to find a mechanism that allowed this whilst not randomly giving players products that were rubbish.
Adding the worker placement mechanism means that players get the chance to look through a product deck, select a card, and add it to their factory, all in secret.
A nice side effect of these mechanism changes is that I was able to remove a lot of rules, concepts and board elements, streamlining the game further. All these changes involved rewriting the manual, reorganising the board, and planning more play testing sessions.
All existing purchasers of the game can re-download the new version by using the link provided by SnappyCheckout when you first purchased the game. You will need to reprint the game as a lot has changed.
If you're keen to get your own copy, pay what you feel here. If you want to test the game, I will be at Essen Spiele Messe, drop by booth A109 in hall 4. If you can't make Essen, or afford a copy of the game then get in touch to arrange a play test.
After Essen, I will start planning the Kickstarter campaign for the boxed version of the game!